Monday, 17 October 2016

Beef Stake

-Brian Mendonça

For as long as I can remember, the beef samosas at Dom Pedro’s were to die for. Dad says the samosas were priced at 75 paise in his working days in 1980. Today they are Rs. 15 a piece. It is good to see they have grown to 2 outlets in Vasco, one near the railway station and the other opposite the fish market. They also have a restaurant in Utorda.

At Sunday Mass it poured during the sermon. Surely a wet day like this called for Dom Pedro’s kheema-pao? We repaired to the somewhat pokey place opposite the fish market where we sat us down on seats under the staircase. For good measure I waded into a beef chop, not forgetting to observe my customary allegiance to the beefsamosa. The next day I contented myself with beef patties as I read Shakespeare’sWinter’s Tale. Sometimes I pop a beef croquette into my mouth when I am at the canteen.

Earlier in the week, saw us seated at Mickey’s, Colva. Undecided as to our order we were helped along when Russell calling from Bombay recommended  Mickey’s Special Beef steak with mashed potatoes. Backed by the fish cafreal and the pork amsol, there were no regrets. On my way to a book reading of ghost stories from Goa at Carpe Diem, Majorda, I strolled on to Majorda beach to sample a delectable beefbiryani for lunch. Queenie has high praise for the beef stroganoff at Seagull, Bogmalo beach. (I preferred the one we had at Souza Lobo, Calangute.)

When I used to dash down to Goa from Delhi sometimes for a day to ease the angst,beef was the best comfort food I could lay my hands on. With mum gone, one day I appeared, at the doorstep at lunch arriving breathless by the Goa Sampark Kranti which comes into Karmali station at 2 p.m. To grace the occasion I went down to Vasco town for the beef chilly fry at Vasco Inn. Mum’s signature dish used to be beefroast with fried potatoes. Now only the flat dish in which it used to be served remains. No train journey used to be complete without mum’s corned beef sandwiches, with butter, supplemented with boiled eggs. The carefully wrapped tissues spoke of mum’s meticulousness. Now I look forward to Queenie’s beef cutlets. Occasionally we havebeef assado. Shepherd’s Pie can be made with beef mince.

Mohammad Akhlaq was lynched by people who thought he was consuming beef in Bisara, Uttar Pradesh in September last year. Ravin Sisodia one of the 18 accused of the crime died a few days ago. Sisodia’s body was kept in deep freeze draped with the tricolour for 3 days while his family made demands. The state government has agreed to give them compensation of 25 lakh and will initiate an inquiry against Akhlaq’s brother, Jan Mohammad on charges of cow slaughter.* What about justice for Mohammad Akhlaq?

*Indian Express, Mumbai City, 8 October 2016, page 1.   Published in Gomantak Times, Weekender St. Inez, Goa on Sunday 16 October 2016.  Pix of beef steak at Mickey's Restaurant, Colva, Goa - courtesy 

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